Augmented Reality, or AR as it’s popularly called, was an exciting but largely aspirational concept for marketers till about a decade ago. But gradually, as the world started going increasingly digital, AR became part of the mainstream. And when the pandemic forced the world indoors and online, 24/7, AR truly came into its own as brands realized how AR-led immersive experiences resulted in more conversions than ever before! According to a report, the AR market is poised to record a significant CAGR of 27.2% from 2021 to 2028, expected to be valued at USD 9.5 billion by then! One of the key components that drivers the growth of the AR ecosystem is its increased adoption across social media platforms. With 3.6 billion social media users last year, nearly half of the world’s population is a user. No wonder brands are looking at AR ad-spend as a serious investment!
At first, AR found widespread application in games and fun activities like Pokémon Go and Snapchat filters. Snapchat was the first to get the customer acquainted with lenses, filters, and other special effects. The other platforms soon followed suit with other innovative AR forms. It’s come a long way since then, paving the way for organizations to showcase their products and services through popular social media platforms. The very premise of social media marketing is the power of networking, where users can share positive experiences and spread a brand’s positive reputation. And AR is proving to boost user-generated content more than ever in favour of the brand!
Retail brands, by introducing AR as a try-on enabler, has witnessed phenomenal demand. When the end customer is able to virtually try on spectacle frames, see a 3D model of a much-coveted pair of shoes, or visualize exactly how they’d carry off a new makeup look, the brand has their attention. Besides enhancing the whole customer experience, virtual try-on also reduce return rates significantly-meaning AR makes a lot if business sense! Facebook has a feature that allows most of its online sellers to display their wares with the help of an integrated AR solution.
Many other industries are utilizing AR in their own apps, too. Travel, real estate, auto, healthcare, and manufacturing can boast of some fine examples. Potential homebuyers can now have a realistic look and feel of their dream homes without actually visiting the sites, thanks to fantastic AR applications. People can snap pictures and shoot videos while accessing such features and share them with close ones through their social networking sites, yet again organically increasing the brand’s reach. There is no dearth of opportunities in AR advertising, either. Engaging customer participation through interactive games, puzzles, adventure activities, and even fundraising for social awareness campaigns is being carried out cleverly by brands all over the world. What’s more; even events and shows are benefiting from the potential of AR to skyrocket user engagement. Outfits organizing sports events, for instance, are harnessing AR to create experiences that take fans as close to the real deal as possible. Imagine the thrill of the customer when they’re able to visualize the steepness of a downhill shot while watching a PGA Tour from the comfort of their own homes. They were actually able to achieve that in 2018!
Finding the right technology partner to give shape to a tangible creative AR idea, therefore, is crucial for the organization. It takes a Tier-1 AR expert to design and deploy gamification experiences and virtual try-on apps that can be discovered, enjoyed, and shared by users. An organization like Manipal Digital, for example, has the distinction of being a highly-rated digital applications specialist besides having several decades of experience of omnichannel brand activation partner to some highly reputed global organizations. Let us work together on how we can convert your AR vision into reality!